Graduation Requirements

To earn a diploma from Hong Kong International School, a student normally attends high school for four years and must earn a minimum of 22 units of credit, 18 of which must be distributed as follows:

  • Distributive Credits: 18
  • Electives: 4
  • Total Required Credits: 22

4 English

  • In Grade 9 students take the interdisciplinary Humanities I (English/History) or Humanities I in Action.
  • In Grade 10 students take the interdisciplinary Humanities II (English/American History).
  • In Grade 11 students choose one of the three full-credit junior English offerings: AP English Language and Composition; Junior English
  • In Grade 12 students choose one of the four full-credit senior English offerings: AP English Literature and Composition; Senior English Course.

3 Mathematics

These courses vary depending on initial placement, but must include an Algebra and a Geometry course.

2 Science

One course must be a full-year Life Science course and one a full-year Physical Science course.

2 Social Studies

This requirement is met through successful completion of the Humanities I and II courses in Grades 9 and 10. Numerous elective options are available in Grades 11 and 12.

2 Physical Education

The equivalent of one semester of Physical Education is required in each year of attendance.

1 1/2 Fine Arts

These courses must include one semester of visual arts and one semester of performing arts. The final half credit may come from either area.

1 1/2 Religion

1 credit will be met through the Wellness block. The other ½ credit will be met by taking a religion elective.

2 World Languages

Two consecutive levels of a single language are required to graduate from HKIS. Please note that students are strongly advised to take Modern Languages courses as part of their elective choices. Modern Language is seen as a requirement for many university and college entrances. Generally, two or three years of the same Modern Language is required though more competitive institutions require three to four years of the same modern language.

4 Electives

To get to the 22 minimum credits required to graduate, a wide variety of electives within and across disciplines are available. Students are strongly encouraged to study the Academic Handbook and have conversations with teachers and counselors regarding their academic programs.


Health & Well Being

Successful completion of counseling seminar each year at HKIS is required.

Beginning with the class of 2021, students will be enrolled in a "Wellness Block" which will include their Counseling Seminar class, a Spiritual Explorations class and their Physical Education class. The block is designed to give our students a comprehensive view of the importance of their spiritual, mental and physical wellness.

Senior Project

Senior Project is an opportunity for seniors in the last year of their school careers to create a yearlong project through which they follow a passion, or develop an interest, develop a skill, and perhaps leave a legacy to the school and wider community. They present their project at the end of the year demonstrating an understanding of their learning, and how it connects to some of HKIS’ Student Learning Results. The presentations are assessed by a panel of two juniors and two faculty moderators.

Seniors will:

  • take part in a learning experience in which they pursue independently an interest or passion
  • explore and take risks
  • take responsibility for their learning
  • showcase their learning at the end of their high school careers
  • take away with them something they value
  • self-assess their learning and their presentation


Successful completion of INTERIM each year at HKIS is required.

High School Slideshow